I immediately fell in love with this chocolate peanut butter cake when I saw it on Smitten Kitchen. Serious drool. I had to make the cake and I had to get Sky High: Irresistible Triple-Layer Cakes! This is the only cake I've made from this cookbook so far but check out The Cake Slice Bakers who are working their way through it, one cake a month.
So is this cake as good as it looks? For the most part, yes. It's a very rich cake, as even my sugar/chocolate addicted sister in law (who I made this cake for) admits. Overall people liked it, but it wasn't a personal favourite of mine. The cake was extremely moist and soft, and really easy to make - though I like my cakes more dense. Both the amount of peanut butter frosting and chocolate-peanut butter glaze might have been a bit too much (as you can see by the mass amounts of chocolate on the top and sides of the cake!) I'd use less next time. And I preferred eating this cake cold.
I'm looking forward to trying other cakes from this cookbook, particularly the triple lemon chiffon cake, maple walnut cake, cappuccino chiffon cake, chai cake with honey-ginger cream, dulce de leche cake, and the Halloween sweet potato cake. And those are just my top picks!
If this sounds good, you might also like:
German Chocolate Cake
Rich Chocolate Cheesecake
Elvis Fluffernutter Cake
Sour Cream-Chocolate Cake with Peanut Butter Frosting and Chocolate-Peanut Butter Glaze
Adapted from Sky High: Irresistible Triple-Layer Cakes
Makes an 8-inch triple-layer cake; serves 12 to 16
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, preferably Dutch process
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup canola oil
1 cup sour cream
1 1/2 cups water
2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Peanut Butter Frosting (recipe follows)
Chocolate-Peanut Butter Glaze (recipe follows)
1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Butter the bottoms and sides of three 8-inch round cake pans. Line the bottom of each pan with a round of parchment paper.
2. Whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. Whisk to combine them well. Add the oil and sour cream and whisk to blend. Gradually beat in the water. Blend in the vinegar and vanilla. Whisk in the eggs and beat until well blended. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and be sure the batter is well mixed. Divide among the 3 prepared cake pans.
3. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a cake tester or wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out almost clean. Let cool in the pans for about 20 minutes. Invert onto wire racks, carefully peel off the paper liners, and let cool completely.
4. To frost the cake, place one layer, flat side up, on a cake stand or large serving plate. Spread 2/3 cup cup of the Peanut Butter Frosting evenly over the top. Repeat with the next layer. Place the last layer on top and frost the top and sides of the cake with the remaining frosting.
5. To decorate with the Chocolate–Peanut Butter Glaze, put the cake plate on a large baking sheet to catch any drips. Pour the glaze over the top of the cake, and using an offset spatula or knife, spread it evenly over the top just to the edges so that it runs down the sides of the cake in long drips. Refrigerate, uncovered, for at least 30 minutes to allow the glaze and frosting to set completely. Remove about 1 hour before serving. Decorate the top with chopped peanut brittle.
Peanut Butter Frosting
Makes about 5 cups
10 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
5 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
2/3 cup smooth peanut butter, preferably a commercial brand (because oil doesn’t separate out)
1. In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy. Gradually add the confectioners’ sugar 1 cup at a time, mixing thoroughly after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl often. Continue to beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes.
2. Add the peanut butter and beat until thoroughly blended.
Chocolate-Peanut Butter Glaze
Makes about 1 1/2 cups
8 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
3 tablespoons smooth peanut butter
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 cup half-and-half
1. In the top of d double boiler or in a bowl set over simmering water, combine the chocolate, peanut butter, and corn syrup. While whisking, heat until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth.
2. Remove from the heat and whisk in the half-and-half, beating until smooth. Use while still warm.